Couple who shot neighbor's dog sentenced to jail, probation
Thu, 03 Mar 2011 17:19:18 GMT —
**Updated with courtroom quotes and video**
As Tyson, a mixed-breed dog who lives with his owners in Toledo continues to recuperate, the couple who stole him and shot him were sentenced Thursday in Toledo Municipal Court.
Eric Skowron, 39, of Toledo, who police say pulled the trigger and put bullets into Tyson's head and chest, was sentenced to 180 days in the Correctional Center of Northwest Ohio with 120 days suspended by Judge Michael Goulding. Skowron will serve 30 days behind bars, 60 days of electronic monitoring or work-release (if he acquires a job) and another two years on probation.
His accomplice, Alisha King, 29, of Lambertville, who is seen on video leading Tyson from his yard to a car, was sentenced to 30 days of community control monitoring, two years of probation and 100 hours of community service.
The two were arrested after Josh Luck of Rochelle Road in Toledo found his dog shot and bleeding in his driveway. Earlier that evening, Skowron had called 911 to report that a dog had attacked his dog. However, a neighbor with a video security system on his home, produced video that showed Tyson being led away by King. According to prosecutors, King led the dog to Skowron's vehicle. Skowron and King took Tyson and shot him at least twice. VIEW SURVEILLANCE VIDEO OF DOG KIDNAPPING
NBC24 had the only camera in the courtroom to catch the sentencing drama for the pair convicted for shooting a neighbor's dog as the dog's owners pleaded for justice:
"Tyson did not deserve what happened to him. Tyson is a loving dog--as the mailman will show you, as our neighbors will show you, as Tyson showed Mr. Skowron and Alisha. That he is a friendly dog. Anybody could take him on a walk down the street," said Josh Luck, Tyson's owner.
The judge gave Josh Luck and his mother Kelly an opportunity to address the court before sentencing, both were emotional.
"Our dog sleeps on the same bed, he's there when we come home. our dog is our family member," said Luck.
But on the other side of courtroom... the defendants were emotional as well.
"I am a huge animal lover. I never intended for any of this to happen," said King.
Both made a sort of apology to the family for what happened, though Skowron maintained his story that the shooting happened in self defense.
"In hindsight everybody, yeah, you could take things back and I would never have wanted any of this to happen at all but I feared for my life at that moment," said Skowron.
The prosecution did not buy that.
"We think their intentions were different than what they're expressing. But even if you take all of their mitigating factors, it's no excuse to shoot the dog. There's other ways to deal with dogs and to handle that," said the Luck family's attorney.
The Toledo Area Humane Society agrees.
"Because of the nature of this we would really like to see a harsh penalty for an example and a deterrent against this type of willful animal cruelty," said Humane Society Executive Director John Dinon.
In the end, both sides expressed the sentences were fair.
An ongoing civil trial may address more than $15 thousand in vet bills. According to Luck, Tyson has endured several surgeries and will have at least one more procedure before he's given a clean bill of health.